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Bitcoin Scams

Cryptocurrency Scams: More Than $2 Million Stolen In Q2 Of 2018

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According to a new report from Kaspersky Lab, which is one of the leading antivirus software platforms, the cybercriminals earned more than $2.3 million during the second quarter of 2018.

The Spam and Phishing in Q2 2018 report also noted that the company prevented almost 60,000 attempts by users from visiting fraudulent and scam web pages which featured popular cryptocurrency wallets and exchanges – from April to June this year.

The crypto scammers worked in a simple way. They earned the funds by luring the victims to send their coins to fake ICOs and token distributions, according to Kaspersky. On top of this, there were websites which were ‘masked’ as popular cryptocurrency services, adopting phishing practices for stealing usernames and/or passwords.

The company’s news release was submitted by Nadezhda Demidova, the lead web content analyst at Kaspersky. As she stated:

“The permanence of attacks targeting financial organizations reflects the fact that more and more people are using electronic money. Still, not all of them are sufficiently aware of the possible risks, so intruders are actively trying to steal sensitive information through phishing.”

The Kaspersky report also demonstrated the reach of phishing scams, where South America and Asia saw the most activity in this area. Brazil was one of the most popular countries for these scams, with 15.51% of all the phishing attacks, followed by Georgia (14.44%), Kirghizstan (13.6%) and Russia (13.27%).

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Bitcoin Scams

Silk Road User Gets $19 Million Bitcoin (BTC) Confiscated By Government

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silk road user
It seems like the number of people who facilitate large-scale illicit activities online using cryptocurrencies is growing - and the government bodies are eyeing them closer and closer. In the latest cryptocurrency news, we can see one Silk Road user getting his millions in Bitcoin (BTC) confiscated by the United States government. It was actually the U.S. Justice Department’s Southern District of New York (SDNY) that announced the arrest of the 60-year old Ohio resident Hugh Brian Haney and the unsealing of federal charges against him as a cryptocurrency-centric case. The Silk Road user is said to have laundered millions of dollars worth of BTC that he accrued from drug deals on the infamous and now-defunct Silk Road dark web market. The U.S. authorities managed to seize $19 million USD worth of Bitcoin from him as part of the Thursday arrest. Notable, the Silk Road was shuttered by the FBI back in 2013. However, there are still cases like these which prove that there are a lot of unsolved mysteries from the site. The Silk Road user with his $19 million in BTC is one of them, featured on many best cryptocurrency news sites this month. If you are asking how did this all happen, it started when the New York unit of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) - which is a wing of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency - helped the SDNY on the Hanley case and managed to track the Silk Road user. The Special Agent-in-Charge Angel Melendez confirmed his team had “employed blockchain analytics” in order to track the user. The altcoin news show that there may be similar cases to this one where altcoins are used for illicit activities. How the FBI managed to track the Silk Road user and lock him is still unknown - though it is possible that the agents turned to one of the well known blockchain investigator firms for outside expertise. The investigators determined that the Silk Road user had been transferring Bitcoin associated with his prolific Pharmville Silk Road vendor account to an undisclosed cryptocurrency exchange starting in 2017 - four years after the market was taken down. The office of SDNY came up with a statement, citing the attorney Geoffrey S. Berman who said:
“As alleged, Hugh Haney used Silk Road as a means to sell drugs to people all over the world.  Then he allegedly laundered his profits – more than $19 million – through cryptocurrency.  Today’s arrest should be a warning to dealers peddling their drugs on the dark web that they cannot remain anonymous forever, especially when attempting to legitimize their illicit proceeds."
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Bitcoin Scams

Bitcoin Reaches The Second Inning As Bakkt Launch Nears

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Bitcoin Reaches
Bitcoin reaches the second Inning as the launch of the crypto exchange bakkt is nearing since it is considered as the major driver for institutional crypto adoption and the bull market. In the coming altcoin news today, we take a closer look at the cryptocurrency and what the Bakkt launch will bring us. Bakkt was supposed to be launched already but as we can see, it is still pending. This increases the chances that the 2019 bitcoin bull run has just started since the bitcoin exchange company is boosting the Wall Street companies with the promise of uncorrelated returns to the stock market. The launch has taken longer than expected but the work is ongoing. The User acceptance  testing (UAT) is scheduled to begin soon according to the exchange and a Fundstrat research report:
 “Bakkt’s launch is expected late in the current quarter.”  “Bakkt could be a huge catalyst for institutional participation in the crypto market.”
Bakkt hosted a summit this week at the NYSE and the company behind it-ICE stated that the things are looking quite bullish for the bitcoin cryptocurrency in the latter part of the year. According to the Fundstrat note, there is a robust turnout at the conference of more than 100 investors. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission which is the most important agency in the launch of Bakkt’s bitcoin futures contracts also had representation. Fundstrat’s reports show that the CFTC  is seeing massive growth in demand and interest for Bitcoin futures from the Public. The bitcoin futures contracts by the CME and CBOE are still considered as the mark of the beginning of the crypto bull market. This is why bitcoin reaches the second inning since soon it will be clear whether the history will repeat itself again. As the latest cryptocurrency news report, Ari Paul, the CIO of BlockTowerCapital participates in the Bakkt event and he is helping with the new addition of users into space. The report also shows that Paul believes that retail adoption will be massive once the app and UI make crypto on-ramps safe and easy to use as PayPal.  
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Bitcoin Scams

Australian Couple Loses $900,000 In A Crypto Scam

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Australian Couple Mike Taylor and his wife Karen in their mid-seventies lost more than $900,000 after investing in an elaborate cryptocurrency scam according to the reports we have in our latest cryptocurrency news below. The Australian Couple told the 7News local station that the losses included their lifetime savings:
 “That was the whole of our superannuation – that’s now gone.”
They didn’t explain how the scheme actually worked but Taylor commented that it was during a crypto trading scam website that promised high returns. He added that they decided to invest because the site ‘’looked legitimate.’’ The couple decided during a trip around the country to invest in the scam. They stated that the money basically disappeared and left the couple and many other Australians in the bankruptcy. Taylor told 7News that he had to go back to work and sell his old 1965 Pontiac in order to make the ends meet. This is not an isolated case according to the reports. On the contrary to what people think, crypto scams have increased massively since 2017 according to the reports issued by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission since 2018 that the losses generated by the crypto scams reached about $6.11 million which shows a massive 190 percent increase over 2017. With the new addition of the $990,000 already gone, 2019 sets a new trend for crypto scams and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission is aware of this happening. There is a 32 percent increase in fraud since 2018 with more than 2,400 reported cases. The Australian watchdog announced the new corporate action plan for 2018 that the crypto sectors and ICOs are the number one priority. If the new policies become a success the country will be able to reduce the crypto scam phenomenon. One strategy that showed to be successful among the scammers is to usurp the identity of celebrities to deceive users. The most popular case was the one of High Jackman which guaranteed returns of more than 10,000 percent. The cryptocurrencies have characteristics that could complicate the protection of users in times of fraud mainly because the transactions are irreversible which makes it impossible for any entity to return funds to a scam victim. Also, the network is decentralized and removes the control from the bank but also there is a high level of anonymity which makes it difficult to know who owns a particular wallet as noted in the altcoin news reports.
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Bitcoin Scams

Hacked Bitpoint Exchange Finds $2.3 Million In Stolen Crypto

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Hacked Bitpoint
The Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Bitpoint, which was all over the latest cryptocurrency news last week, has managed to discover part of the stolen funds. The hacked Bitpoint exchange discovered more than 250 million yen ($2.3 million USD) in cryptocurrency which is only  a small part of the $32 million that they lost due to hacker attacks. The local English language daily The Mainichi first reported about this on July 14. According to the publication, Bitpoint found the stolen cryptocurrency on overseas exchanges which were using a trading system provided by Bitpoint Japan. The hacked Bitpoint exchange told the source that the recent discovery brings the total sum of lost founds down from 3.5 billion yen ($32 million) to 3.02 billion yen ($28 million) as the latest altcoin news show. For those of you who did not follow the news, the hacked Bitpoint exchange was initially compromised on July 12. More than 2.5 billion yen ($23 million) of the stolen funds in the hack belonged to customers, while 1 billion yen ($9.2 million) belonged to the exchange. As many best cryptocurrency news sites showed, the hackers stole Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), Ether (ETH) and Ripple (XRP) from the hot wallets of the exchange. The hacked Bitpoint exchange then suspended all of the services following the hack, while the parent firm of the exchange, Remixpoint Inc., managed to shed 19% following the theft. Remixpoint went untraded in Tokyo after the attack due to a reported glut of sell orders. The recent incident that involved Bitpoint follows a record-breaking hack of the Japanese exchange Coincheck. The truth is, the hacked Bitpoint exchange is not even close to the sum that Coincheck lost - when more than $534 million worth of NEM tokens were directly stolen from the exchange's low-security hot wallet. What hurts people the most is the fact that Bitpoint was one of the several exchanges that received a business improvement order from Japan's finance watchdog - the Financial Services Agency (FSA) - in June of last year. One of the FSA's main concerns was the exchanges' compliance with Anti-Money Laundering as well as Know Your Customer requirements. The agency also expressed their concerns about customer funds not being kept sufficiently separate from those of the exchanges.
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